Nippon Shokubai filed an opposition against the grant of BASF’s patent. In relation to the payment they filed EPO Form 2300E, which – erroneously – did not indicate any payment method in box X ‘Payment’, which then indicated ‘not specified’. In the accompanying letter the professional representative had indicated that the opposition fee could be deducted from their deposit account.

The Opposition Division held the opposition filed by the professional representative of Nippon Shokubai deemed not to be filed because payment of the opposition fee was not effected in a timely manner under the new rules for automatic debiting (ADA 2017).

Nippon appealed.

Case date: 20 March 2020
Case number: T 1000/19
Court: European Patent Office (EPO), Board of Appeal

A full summary of this case has been published on Kluwer IP Law.


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  1. I fail to see how the deficiency in this case could be excused but in T 0600/18 not. In both cases the party wishing to pay the fee had indicated their desire to pay but failed to do so.

  2. Without G 1/12, the situation would have been more difficult for the opponent.

    G 1/12 was about substitution of the name, not about paying the fee.

    For paying the fee G 1/18 applies, and this would not have been in favour of the opponent.

    It is thus perfectly to be envisaged that a different BA comes to a different conclusion in a similar situation.

    Wait and see if it is a one off decision. But it is difficult to consider that the matter is settled.

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